|The first 6 drivers of the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge pose with an example of the car they will be competing in|
Managed by Porsche Cars GB, the GT3 Cup Challenge will have a six-weekend, 12-race season starting at Snetterton over the Easter Weekend and culminating with a high-profile date alongside the Porsche Carrera Cup GB at the Silverstone BTCC meeting on 6/7 October.
Geoff Turral of Porsche Cars GB introduced the 2012 GT3 Cup Challenge: “This is a great opportunity to race a thoroughbred factory built race car,” he said. “The series has very broad appeal and it is a chance to move towards the Carrera Cup GB for ambitious drivers. Central to the development of the GT3 Cup Challenge is linkage with the Carrera Cup.”
Competitors will pay a highly competitive season registration fee of just £3000 for all 12 races, while those who cannot commit to a full season can also join the series for individual events for a relevant entry fee. The dates for the GT3 Cup Challenge, which is open to any 911 GT3 Cup car from the 2009 model year or earlier, are:
7/8 April; Snetterton
19/20 May; Rockingham
17 June; Thruxton
21/22 July; Croft
18/19 August; Donington Park
6/7 October; Silverstone
Amongst those on hand for the launch were the first six drivers to commit to the series: Steven Liquorish, Gary Marsh, Joe Porter, David Porter, Peter Smallwood and David Willis-Hargreaves. Joe Porter is a promising young karter, while Willis-Hargreaves is making the step up from track days and will make his first ever race start at Snetterton in April. “I’ve done track days for three or four years in Porsches and decided it was time to try racing,” said Willis-Hargreaves. “I’ve got a car that was raced in the Porsche Supercup in 2005 and I’ve already done a few track days with it.”
In total, up to 2000 911 GT3 Cup race cars have been built by Porsche since the introduction of the 996-model car over a decade ago and the GT3 Cup Challenge will have classes to cater for both the 996-model cars and the later 997-model cars.
The GT3 Cup Challenge is now an established concept across the world, with successful race series in ten countries.